Iconic books are texts revered as objects of power rather than just as words of instruction, information, or insight. In religious and secular rituals around the globe, people carry, show, wave, touch and kiss books and other texts, as well as read them. This blog chronicles such events and activities. (For more about iconic books, see the links to the Iconic Books Project at left.)

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Funerals for scriptures

The proper way of disposing of worn-out copies of the Sikh scriptures, the Guru Granth Sahib, is by burning them. This ceremony takes the form of a funeral, reports the NewIndPress. I assume this practice stems from the Sikh belief that the holy book is the Guru.

Concern over proper disposal of Qurans is prompting legislative action in Pakistan, according to the Daily Times. On the same theme, Time magazine produced a photoessay some time back about a Pakistani man who tries to preserve and, sometimes, redistribute old Qur'ans. His Qur'an "cemetary" has itself become a shrine.

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